Find out the latest from the world of Learn to Uke – lessons, workshops & more!

Alumni Summer Party Aboard Tamesis Dock…

Bring Friends. All Are Welcome!

Tomorrow night is our summer party aboard the Tamesis Dock. Whilst it’s a boat party, the Tamesis is a beautiful 1930’s Dutch Barge which, as it’s name suggests, is docked. You are free to come and go at whatever time you like.

For those of you who like to skim read:

Where: Tamesis Dock. Near Lambeth Bridge. Vauxhall Tube.

When: Wednesday 2 August, from 18:00(ish) til 23:30(ish).*
*Basically, head down after work. We’ll start strumming at 19:30-20:00 til pub close.

How much? Free!

Is there a bar? Yes!

Do they do food? Yes!

Do they take cards? Yes!

We will be using the Ukulele Wednesdays Songbook to strum songs from and we’ll be showing the chords/lyrics on screen but do grab a copy, just in case.

Ahoy me hearties. You are welcome to fancy dress if you like? Pirates? Hula? Whatever nautical theme you like.

See you on board!

Amanda, Howard, Laura, Lorraine x

Brush Up Your Performance with our Ukulele Summer School

I am so excited about our upcoming workshops that I had to write about it so you can see them all in one place. For every Tuesday in June I’ve brought specialists in their field to help you hone various ukulele related skills. Without further ado, here’s the list:

Tuesday 20 June – Write a song and perform it on stage with Tricity Vogue
Learn the art of songwriting by writing a song together – and then perform it at Ukelele Cabaret with Tricity Vogue. We’ll use well-tried tricks and techniques to pick a theme, choose a style, shape the chords and melody, and create a catchy tune with a singalong chorus.
Book here

Tuesday 27 June – Prepare For Your Open Mic with Lord Hicks
Whether you’ve played at a few open mic nights or you like the idea of it but have yet to dip your toe in, this workshop will help you consider your performance and bring your A-game with Lord Hicks.
Book here

Tuesday 11 July – Make A Music Video with Low-Key Ukulele
If you’ve always fancied covering your favourite song or recording your own original material and uploading it to YouTube, but want to be a bit more creative, this workshop will get you started.
Book here

Tuesday 6 June – Develop Your Musical Ear with Robin Brown
If you’ve always wanted to know how to work out what chords are being played in a song or what the strumming pattern is, these two workshops will help you to do exactly that.

This event has passed.

Please do something nice for others this Christmas…

Hey there,

Christmas isn’t great for everyone. For those who can’t afford it or are homeless, Christmas can be stressful, lonely and freezing cold. Many people die due to that coldness. It’s something that I think about every year, which is why I tend to do or organise things for Crisis. The Royal George last week raised £37. Crisis ask for £23 to feed, clothe and bathe a person each day, so I’m hoping we can raise a bit more than that between us. 🙂 I distribute the songs and set up/organise the jam nights for free, but I would ask that if you’ve had any benefit from anything I’ve done this year, would you do one of the following 3 things?

  1. Donate an old ukulele? I’m going into a homeless centre on 28 December, as I’ve been asked to either teach a session (if we raise enough cash to give the guests a ukulele each) and/or run a singalong to provide entertainment for the guests at the shelter. You are welcome to join me (see number 3). If you want to donate an old uke, I’ll be at Mercato Metropolinato on 14 December, and Tamesis Dock on 21 December leading Ukulele Wednesdays Christmas parties. All donations gratefully received.
  2. Donate money to the ukulele fund to buy ukuleles for the homeless (all money donated here will buy ukuleles for the homeless) £22.99 will buy a decent new uke. If you would rather your money went to food rather than ukuleles you can donate money or food to Southwark Food Bank.
  3. Volunteer your time. I’m going to run a lesson (if we get enough money to buy ukuleles) or a singalong. Email me to find out how to join me on 28 December.

Here’s the Ukulele Wednesdays Christmas Songbook 2016 to reward your kindness. 🙂

Hope you have a brilliant Christmas. 🙂

Lorraine x

How do I transpose a song?

And why would I want to transpose a song?

Transposition/transposing/changing the key of a song is handy if a song sits in a key that isn’t very friendly to your voice. So, if you are finding yourself either at the uppermost or the lowermost parts of your voice, like this you might find it useful and more pleasant on the ear to transpose the song. For example, Johnny Cash’s song, Hurt is in A minor (Am) which sounds amazing when it was sung by Johnny Cash and his beautifully strong low register. It’s a bit of a stretch for me to get those low notes, though, so I tried it in a few different keys to enable myself to sing all of the notes in the song. Have a listen to that here:


As you can probably hear, it’s a massive struggle in Am. It’s not much better when it’s been moved up a third to C#m or a 4th to Dm but at least the notes are achieved for the lyrics to ‘the only thing that’s real’.

If you’ve had the same trouble with any song at all, it’s well worth transposing it to suit your voice. If you print, cut out and put a pin fastener through this Key Transposing Wheel, with Instructions you’ll see that you can move a song to any key. Bear in mind that if the chord is a minor chord or a seventh chord in the original, it’ll need to stay as a minor or a seventh chord in the transposed song.

Thank you to Cathy’s Chords for the transposition wheel.